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Unformatted text preview: Introduction to Machiavelli Machiavellis Life o Born 1469 Florence (Italy) o Wrote history, military advice, plays, poems, and novels o Italy not united country-ruled by city states (called Republics) Machiavellis Florence o 1434-1494-Florence ruled by the wealthy Medici family (powerful bankers) o 1494-Republic established (Republic meaning the citizens were in control of the government) Machiavelli-a high level magistrate and diplomat (1498-1512)(diplomat to France, the Pope and Cesar Borgia) o 1512-Spain defeats France in Italy (Florence sides with France) Medicis retake control of Florence Machiavelli imprisoned, tortured and exiled o 1513-during exile Machiavelli writes The Prince (1513) and other works (The Discourses)(towards the end of his exile (1520s) the Medici rulers commission Machiavelli to write the history of Florence) o 1527-Florence becomes a Republican again Medicis lose power again Machiavelli returns to Florence Dies shortly after (in his late 50s, earl 60s) Machiavelli the Political Theorist o Two approaches to political theory Political idealism-outlines the best or ideal form of politics, links politics with ethics (The Republic classified as political idealism) Political realism-focuses on how to gain or maintain political power, aims at what does exist o Machiavelli as first political realist? o Machiavelli as first modern political theorist? Breaks with classical theorists coherent cosmology (thinking the universe is structured in a certain way and works in a certain way) Machiavellis The Prince Typology of Princedoms o Princedoms are when there is one ruler o Hereditary Princedoms Defined-sovereignty(ruling power) derived from a direct ancient line of ancestors Maintaining them-easiest to maintain o New Princedoms Defined-sovereignty acquired through any method other than hereditary Maintaining them-depends on the type (wise princes will follow the examples of those in the past who succeeded)...
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